Special Counsel Robert Mueller continues to investigate former Trump campaign chair Paul Manafort who was indicted for the second time back in February along with his assistant Rick Gates on 32 new counts including tax, financial, and bank fraud crimes. Last October, 12 counts of charges were filed on Manafort and Gates for conspiracy, money laundering, financial, and false statements.
Now, it has also been revealed that Mueller seized bank accounts at three different financial institutions just one day before Manafort was indicted. According to POLITICO:
‘The previously unknown move against the bank accounts was revealed in a list of search and seizure warrants prosecutors submitted to a federal court in Washington after Manafort’s defense team complained that the government was withholding too many details about how the warrants were obtained.’
‘The new filing also indicated that Mueller’s investigators have been pressing on with their work in recent weeks despite the pair of indictments pending against Manafort and a detailed indictment in February of the Russia-based Internet Research Agency and a dozen Russian nationals for alleged interference in the 2016 U.S. presidential election.’
The prosecution said that on March 9, the special counsel’s office obtained a search warrant for information related to “five telephone numbers controlled by AT&T.” Who the numbers belonged to wasn’t revealed, but some of the information was provided to Manfort’s defense so one might presume there is some connection.
The prosecutors also said that some of the information was withheld from Manafort because it relates to the identity of informants or “to ongoing investigations that are not the subject of either of the current prosecutions involving Manafort.”
According to POLITICO:
‘Manafort is currently facing two separate indictments. One, in Washington, focuses on money laundering and foreign lobbying. Another, in Alexandria, Virginia, involves tax fraud, bank fraud and failure to report overseas bank accounts. The 69-year-old Manafort could potentially spend the rest of his life in prison if convicted in either case.’
Although neither of Manafort’s cases appears to be related to the allegations of Russian collusion, it was revealed this week that Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein:
‘specifically authorized the special counsel’s team to pursue the financial and foreign lobbying allegations against Manafort.’
Within the new filing on Manafort, information is present showing that investigators obtained a search warrant to search a storage locker belonging to Manafort, which was somewhere in Virginia.
According to POLITICO:
‘All the warrants listed by prosecutors Thursday remain under seal and off limits to the public, but new details in the latest filing indicate that the storage unit search took place in late May or early June, about two months before the FBI conducted an early morning raid on Manafort’s Alexandria, Va. condo.’
It was also said that an FBI agent may have gotten into the locker before the search that a federal magistrate in Virginia ordered. POLITICO also reported:
‘Some press accounts have said investigators obtained a Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act warrant to conduct a search of a storage locker belonging to Manafort at some point last year. It’s possible they used that authority to enter the locker and then decided to obtain a criminal warrant to delve into whatever Manafort had inside.’
Here’s what Twitter had to say:
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